Focusing Tip #682 – “I don’t know how not to merge with my hurt parts when I am with my family.”
Do you get triggered when you are with your family because it is so clear THEY are triggered? Read on…
A Reader writes:
The hardest time for me to be Self-in-Presence and not react out of my parts is when I am with my family – not my spouse, but my original family.
Can you speak to how one can use Focusing and Self-in-Presence with another person whose hurt parts are activated and they tend to merge with those parts. It’s too easy to merge with one’s own hurt parts, and also to merge with a loved one’s hurt parts.
Yes, being with our original family can be very hard. It can help to simply acknowledge that that is true. “This is hard.”
What’s especially hard is not to react in our characteristic way.
Maybe you have a family member who always insults you and puts you down. (Or maybe more than one!) Then you react defensively and feel helpless and/or angry.
Maybe you have a family member who acts helpless as a way to manipulate others into feeling guilty. Then you help or you don’t help but either way you feel trapped.
Maybe you have a family member who is chronically angry and complaining and dominates the conversation with what is wrong. You hate the way there is no space for you, but going silent or trying to get in your own opinion both don’t work.
No wonder some of us stay away from family gatherings!
What would it be like to be Self-in-Presence in those situations instead of reacting from a hurt, trapped, defensive part of yourself?
The biggest secret is to PAUSE. Reacting quickly and automatically will always be from a part of you.
Pause, and silently, inwardly, feel how you feel, both emotionally and physically.
Silently, inwardly, acknowledge how you feel, and acknowledge that this situation is a hard one.
No matter what happens, your job is to be present for yourself.
And then, if possible, be curious… both toward yourself, and outwardly.
What happens next will emerge from the situation. But when you do these things… PAUSE, ACKNOWLEDGE, BE CURIOUS… then what happens next is more likely to be something new, with life energy.
Let’s see what happens!